Merry Xmas, Happy New Year and Farewell NZ, Hello UK
My first post of 2007!
We had a fantastic time in NZ. Just to prove I didn't neglect my knitting habits here is a pic of the magazines and books I bought in NZ and this doesn't include the ones I got for Xmas either. The book on top has designs by my knitting buddy Anna and it was a strange feeling seeing a photo of a person you know in a book on sale half way round the World.
I got some wonderful books for Christmas and my two favourites are these books which will be useful for helping my design sketches become less childish and my knitting motifs inspired from original styles but totally original as far as knitting charts go.
Here are some sheepskin slippers I bought whilst on my travels, see how they are held together with crochet? I might design some slippers of my own, a mixture of felting and crochet but for the time being I will be wearing these.
Just behind the slippers there is the view from our balcony at the Kimi Ora Resort and you can see part of the Abel Tasman National Park and the beach of Kaiteriteri. One of the ladies who works in reception at this resort is mad about knitting and so is her daughter. They love the idea of knitting clubs and have bought the Debbie Stoller Stitch n Bitch books. They tell me that the knitting trend is only just taking off in NZ How I would love to be over there and start up knitting clubs and workshops.
I did buy some NZ wool but as I mentioned before, for a land full of sheep the yarn on sale was very disappointing. However, for anyone wanting to start a business there, there are probably a lot of opportunities to be the 'first' in anything that has already been done in the UK or USA.
The 'weights' i.e. thickness of yarn in NZ varies a bit from the UK standard. They have 8 ply equivalent to our DK but their 10 ply is slightly thinner than our Aran or Worsted weight here. The yarn shops I went to did not have any of the Rowan, Debbie Bliss Jaeger etc that we are so used to seeing in our smaller yarn shops. In fact, in London we are quite spoiled for yarn despite the fact we all moan about difficulties of getting hold of stuff. The type of young and vibrant knitting community we have here is what I was very homesick for. The yarn shops in NZ were mostly frequented by 'homemakers' types who would have probably strung up garlic and a crucifix around their doorways if I had told them I was designing stuff for The Anticraft!
Talking of the Anticraft, it is no secret that they have a publishing deal and exciting that they will have a book coming out later this year.They have chosen 3 of my designs to be included in the book. These are totally original designs I have only sketched so far. Now I am home, I will be working on these for the rest of this month as the deadline for completion is end of January